Oak Creek Begins Review of Fire Consolidation Report
The Public Policy Forum spent about a year researching how fire departments in Oak Creek, Franklin, Hales Corners, Greendale and Greenfield could consolidate and save money.
Oak Creek is diving into the Public Policy Forum's report on fire department consolidation and will hold a public meeting to hear what residents have to say.
The Oak Creek Common Council on Tuesday referred the report to the Finance and Personnel committees and the Police and Fire Commission. The city will hold a meeting at a later date to give residents a chance to weigh in, and Public Policy Forum President Rob Henken will speak to the council within the next month, Mayor Steve Scaffidi said.
The Public Policy Forum spent about a year talking to fire chiefs and administrators in Oak Creek, Franklin, Greendale, Greenfield and Hales Corners to study how the fire departments could consolidate and save money.
The study laid out three models on how it could be done: a full consolidation, an operational consolidation and coordinated support services.
The full consolidation, in which the five departments would be combined into one, saves about $1 million per year, according to the study. However, it also presents issues with local control.
"The Public Policy Forum did an admirable job," City Administrator Gerald Peterson said. "They put together a report that identifies important issues where communities could potentially work together, and I think wisely also identified that this is really an issue of local control vs. some potential for cost savings."
Oak Creek Fire Chief Tom Rosandich said the city has to look at the report carefully and determine which recommendations are the most practical.
"This is something that should be prudently looked at slowly, rather than rapidly, in regards to how we approach this over time and what makes sense," he said.